New practical science competition from Gazprom Neft attracts more than 1,200 senior school students

St Petersburg was recently host to a new competition — “Growing Talent”, involving the resolution of various oil- and gas-themed problems — for senior school students from St Petersburg, Tyumen, Murvalenko, and the Yamal settlements of Mys Kamenny (Cape Kamenny) and Novy Port. More than 1,200 students took part in the tournament (unique in its sheer size and extent), representing almost 500 schools throughout those regions in which Gazprom Neft operates.

The key feature of the Growing Talent competition is its format, developed in line with current international best practice, and testing students’ ability to apply their general knowledge as well as research skills. Participants — students in their final four years of schooling, grouped into teams of three — were given the opportunity to undertake genuine scientific research on current problems facing the oil and gas industry, with their proposals assessed by experts from the Gazprom Neft Research and Development Centre.

Eighteen winning teams — producing the most precise and interesting projects — were invited to St Petersburg, where they were able to take part, personally, in the competition by presenting their own solutions to current problems facing the industry to competition organisers. Ultimately, the three prize-winning places were shared between two teams from St Petersburg and one from Noyabrsk. The junior division was won by a team from St Petersburg, with teams from Tyumen and Novy Port taking second and third place.

Alexander Dybal, Member of the Management Board, Gazprom Neft, commented: “Through our Home Towns CSR initiative we have been able to develop a project aimed at giving senior high school students the opportunity to address the real-life operational problems faced by the oil industry. The kids discovered how their knowledge can be used in practice, and what life as an oilman is actually like. The volume of applications — from various regions — makes clear the high appeal of this format. The Growing Talent competition is part of a wide-ranging initiative from Gazprom Neft supporting educational organisations and talented young people. I have every confidence that our competition will help increase interest in science among the young generation, and help in determining their future professions.”

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The Gazprom Neft “Home Towns” corporate social responsibility (CSR) project has a particular focus on education, and on cooperation with both secondary and tertiary professional and general educational establishments. Since 2008 the company has supported the National Mineral Resources University (Mining University) in organising technical and managerial educational programmes, as well as in helping to update and develop the university’s scientific and research base. In collaboration with St Petersburg State University the company has, since 2013, provided support to the Chebyshev laboratory and, in 2015, launched a competition — “Progress in Mathematics” — to support gifted mathematicians.